How Eating a Plant Based Diet Can Save the World Good for you and the world, plant based diets only offer up positive benefits. What is a Plant Based Diet? A plant based diet consists mostly of, well, plants. Vegan, vegetarian, plant based, natural, these lifestyle diet terms have been thrown around a lot in recent years and are often used interchangeably. There are minimal differences between each based on how each person views their food choices but ultimately they all come down to being a plant based diet. Plant based diets consist mostly of vegetables, fruits, grains, and soy that avoid ingredients that are derived from animals. Now that plant based diets are becoming more and more popular for a multitude of reasons - including the environmental impact - more plant based alternatives are making their way into everyday life like plant based burgers, chicken, and cheese. How Can a Plant Based Diet Save the World A plant based diet alone cannot save the world but if most people switched to a plant based diet, it would significantly help stop climate change. But how does cutting out animal ingredients and byproducts reduce environmental impacts? Many ways that include cutting down on greenhouse gases, reduces water use, and even saves land. Reducing Greenhouse Gases People often refer to reducing greenhouse gases and cutting down on their carbon foot print when talking about their sustainable choices. Switching to a plant based diet easily and quickly can help you lower your carbon footprint. Food production itself accounts for about a quarter of all greenhouse gases in the Earth’s atmosphere while meat and dairy production alone are about 15% of all greenhouse gases. That is a lot of greenhouse gases and emissions that can easily be cut out with a plant based diet. Plant based food counterparts typically put out 10-50 times less emissions. Saving Water for the Environment It’s hard to believe that water cannot be used infinitely and will in fact run out, especially when our planet is comprised mostly of water. But, yes, our water sources will run out if we continue to overuse water in excess. The biggest industry using water is the agriculture industry which produces meat and dairy. The burger itself does not have water in it, but the water used to feed animals and then to produce the burger (or any food) is excessive. Just one pound of beef, requires 1,800 gallons of water to be made.
Reducing Land Use It goes without saying, but the land we have is all we have - actually, we’re losing more and more of our beaches and wetlands every year. It’s time we start focusing on reducing land waste and minimizing our impact on the land. Right now, about half of the habitable land of the Earth is being used by the agriculture industry. Of that 50% being used for agriculture, 77% is being used for livestock. By eliminating foods produced by animals, a large portion of habitable land would be cleared up and could be used for more plants, trees, and housing or just saving some land for parks. What Does This All Mean Plant based diets are an easy and achievable goal for reducing and stopping climate change. Our diets have one of the biggest impacts on the world while they are such a small part and decision in our lives. Switching to a plant based diet can help in so many ways, more than just your carbon footprint and clearing up land to be used for other activities, the positive effects of a plant based diet are limitless. Plant based diets are easier to achieve than ever before and you can find options in just about any store or restaurant with many places dedicated to serving an all vegan and sustainable line up like the Mansion’s Pantry. They aim to give you your favorite foods and delectable cheeses as a plant based alternative with a low impact on the Earth and climate.